Set amongst the foothills of the Pyrenees, the Roussillon is an amphitheatre opening towards the Mediterranean sea to the East, lined by the Corbières hill range to the North and the Pyrenees to the South. The first traces of vine culture here date back to Greek antiquity. The vineyard terroirs of the Domaine des Schistes, run by the Sire family, climb above the Agly valley near the villages Estagel, Tautavel and Maury. The domaine's first vinifications took place in 1989 and the vineyard covers 55 hectares. The first stage of the maturing process of the Rivesaltes Solera takes place in ciment tanks, then continues in large, old wooden casks, then in 600 litre barrels (demi-muids). Following evaporation, the tanks and casks remain only partially full to enable the wines' controlled oxidation. The first wine to be introduced into this permanent blend is now twenty years old. Only 20 to 30% of the barrels' contents are used for bottling to maintain a high proportion of old wines in the blends which continue to age.